Middle school lunch nostalgia beckoned and I took the call

by DGO Web Administrator

After scrolling through a bunch of recipes I had saved on my phone, I found myself itching for something weird to try out. While I knew it definitely wasn’t the strangest choice I could go with by any stretch, when my eyes fixed on a recipe for sour cream and blueberry coffee cake, and I knew I had found my next baking venture. I wasn’t even sure I would like it, to be honest.

Still, reading through this simple recipe brought me back to when I was a kid and had a huge thing for sour cream. It was weird. These days, while I enjoy slapping a heap onto any Mexican dish in front of me, I’ve cooled it on licking out the tiny containers of sour cream that came with my tacos in the lunch line. Did I mention I was also sporting spinster glasses and half-curled ’80s bangs as I made these decisions?

Anyway, these days sour cream isn’t exactly the main ingredient I’m looking for in coffee cake, or any recipe for that matter, but my nostalgia beckoned, and I was taking the call.

The recipe first called for a cup and a half of fresh blueberries that would need to be washed, examined for gross shit, and de-stemmed. For someone who just wanted to lay around and listen to podcasts, this seemed like an impossible task. But don’t worry. I got through it so I could finish what turned out to be one of my most disappointing baking attempts.

But, I’m getting ahead of myself.

The recipe then called for throwing said blueberries into flour and then into a sieve, shaking off the flour into another bowl. I’m not exactly sure why I had to do that, but I’m sure there’s a good auteurist reason behind it. I then poured in the rest of the flour, as well as baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Taking another bowl, I combined two eggs, sour cream, vanilla, and sugar and beat it together with an electric mixture I stole from my roommate. As gradually as I could without dumping the bowl over, as I had it in a precarious position on the edge of my counter top, I added the flour while stirring with my electric mixer. As someone who tends to be a train wreck when it comes to coordination, you can imagine my terror.

Once that bit was over, I poured roughly half (OK, it was a lot more than that) of the batter into a pan, sprinkled over a layer of blueberries, poured the rest of the batter in, and added the rest of the blueberries on top.

The recipe then called for a brown sugar topping that included brown sugar, butter, and cinnamon, which I scattered over the top of my coffee cake.

Then it was off to the oven for 30 minutes. The instructions called for between 30-35 minutes, but this baking endeavor was beginning to encroach on my bedtime, and I didn’t want to spare the extra five minutes.

I left the coffee cake on the counter to cool overnight. The plan was to cut a slice for breakfast the next morning. When I got ready to taste test, though, I found the mid-section of my sad, ugly cake was drooping. I Googled and found that my cake was probably undercooked and there wasn’t enough structure in my case (whatever that means).

I’m unable to give a thorough overview of how my bread turned out, because as it turns out, it wasn’t just undercooked. It was extremely undercooked. So I was mostly having to break off the sides to taste test the parts that weren’t just cake batter. However, I was pleasantly surprised by the portions I was able to pick off. The sweet bread had a lemony aftertaste, probably due to the sour cream paired with the tart but oh-so-juicy blueberries.

Too bad my coffee cake was basically trash since it didn’t bake all the way through, which I am blaming on the fact that I didn’t use the properly sized dish to cook it in. I don’t know if I can do that or not, but I am.

Amanda Push is a writer who wishes she lived with a cat and just wants to learn how to not eat like a college student anymore. Contact her at [email protected].


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